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Harris v. Shanahan
Kansas Supreme Court
387 P.2d 771, 192 Kan. 183 (1963)
In 1962 Kansas (defendant) conducted a census and found that its population was approximately 2,165,000 people. In 1963 the state senate introduced Senate Bill 440 (SB 440) to reapportion the senatorial districts according to the 1962 census data. SB 440 passed in the senate and went to the state house of representatives. The house of representatives amended and passed the bill, and the senate passed the amended bill. SB 440 was sent to the governor to be signed into law. Due to an unnoticed clerical error, a portion of SB 440 as passed by both houses of the Kansas legislature was left out of the bill presented to and signed into law by the governor. The enacted law omitted the portion of SB 440 that related to the city of Leawood, inadvertently leaving Leawood’s citizens out of the apportionment plan and without representation in the senate. J. P. Harris (plaintiff) challenged the law in state court. The district court held that the law was unconstitutional and void. Kansas appealed to the state supreme court, arguing that the legislative intent of the bill was clear and requesting that the court insert the omitted language to prevent the law from being voided.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Fatzar, J.)
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